They are logical points, but three important aspects of the connection between the dedication rituals and the celebration of the Eucharist:
17. After the altar had been prepared, the bishop celebrates the eucharist, the principal and the most ancient part of the whole rite, (See Pope Vigilius, Epistula ad Profuturum episcopum 4: PL 84, 832) because the celebration of the eucharist is in the closest harmony with the rite of the dedication of a church:
- For the celebration of the eucharistic sacrifice achieves the end for which the church was built and the altar erected and expresses this end by particularly clear signs.
- Furthermore, the eucharist, which sanctifies the hearts of those who receive it, in a sense consecrates the altar and the place of celebration, as the ancient Fathers of the Church often assert: ‘This altar should be an object of awe: by nature it is stone, but it is made holy when it receives the body of Christ.’(John Chrysostom, Homilia 20 in 2 Cor 3: PG 61, 540.)
- Finally, the bond closely connecting the dedication of a church with the celebration of the eucharist is likewise evident from the fact that the Mass for the dedication has its own preface, which is a central part of the rite itself.